After 16 months of having the Eurovision windows installed and used in all sort of weather, I would like now to point out few quirks that are not mention in the manual when you purchase them..
The Eurovision is a good quality acrylic window that does come in three colours frame and 17 different sizes. Lets get this out of the way now: I had no problems what so ever with the mechanical or structural side of things with these windows.
Another great feature of these windows is that they required no holes for screws to be fitted as the use a two panel sandwich.
The best part about these windows is without a doubt, the great way they managed to incorporate both shades and fly screen on a single rail. It looks great, it is clean, it only takes 50 mm of space and it works extremely well to the point that if you close the shades in the day, the vehicle inside will be completely pitch black and at the time will not let any light out at night (these will be of particular interest to those people that like stealth camping). The fly screen also works as a treat..
But, yes there are few buts, as I encounter few problems along the way both at installation time and later in the every day to day use.
In Gigi, I have 8 windows all of different size, as while the furniture was designed, I allowed for the windows to fit around such furniture.. The first thing that I probably overlooked at purchase time, but that now made me realise that the smaller windows are not really effective as the big ones, is not because of their size, but because of the two stage difference between windows. As per manual:
Three stage opening position on all windows greater than 300mm and two-stage up to 300mm.
So, not just the window size is smaller but it also open a third less than the bigger ones. Not a big deal, but just remember that if you are planning to install several small windows but you still need plenty of air to move. Unfortunately between 300 and 450 mm there is nothing available and I had only 400 mm at my disposal. There is no solution for fixing this as the latches can only be the length of the frame..
The second problem is that these windows are designed to fit vehicle thickness ranging from 24 to 35 mm. Now the salesman will tell you that is not true and you can use the bigger frame they sell. Now that’s a lie! Because even if you use the bigger frame you will not have enough to cover the 20 mm gap left between the two frame (the outside frame and the inside frame) in a standard 65 mm coach frame. So yes, you can still use these windows, as I did, in thicker frames but you will have to find the way to cover that gap left between the two window frames. I ended up purchasing some black semi flexible PVC (not rubber) strip form the UK and use it to cover the gap. So it wasn’t hard, but it was a problem, that judging from the salesman, I should have not encountered. In the picture you can clearly see the 20 mm gap even after having purchase the wider internal frame recommended by the salesman.
The third problem is only noticeable on very strong windy days.
On those days, the wind can easily open and close your windows as there is no way to stop the window acrylic other than those three position that relay on the weight of the window, for it to work. The soon the wind moves the window a fraction up, the mechanism is released, as that, is the intended way for the mechanism to unlock and allow you to close the window. Now, you find yourself having windows slamming open and close until you use the semi lock position or lock position, in which case your window has just been made redundant. No more fresh air coming in..
Unless a way to lock the window in the open position is found, that could easily lead to severe windows damage. This is a serious bug in those windows design! There are solutions to fix this but frankly after having paid this much money, I wish they did think of it before putting this window in production. An easy fix would be something like a rubber band between the end of the strut and the middle handle catcher, but like I said, is not a permanent solution to an otherwise perfect window! That’s a shame.
I wouldn’t be surprise at all, if the next model coming out, will have a different strut system to allow the window to be locked in the open position as well..
The last issue is not really the windows fault but more related to the angle of the frame they are mounted on. Most coaches have a frame that does get smaller toward the top especially older coaches where the difference between floor and ceiling can be as much as 15-20 cm.. On Gigi the difference is only 5 cm, but that is still enough to allow water dripping in from the top acrylic corner when the window is open and it rains. In a normal situation like a caravan, where the walls are perfectly vertical, this wouldn’t be an issue.
There is however a very easy fix for this that involves adding a small angle shape aluminium strip above each window or like in some RV, for the entire length of the vehicle on both side. The strip behave like a small rain gutter not allowing the dripping water to reach that little top corner in the windows.
There is however another possible way to fix this issue and it involved using what it seems to be very popular in the US, an outside shades or window awning (they have different names) that would easily fix two problem at once especially in the Australia summer conditions.
- You could leave the windows open even on rainy days
- Far more Important: It doesn’t allow the light to reach the inside of the vehicle making the entire RV a lot cooler.
- In my case, and in case of where people have old silicon around the windows frames, would prevent the water from reaching the top frame.
They all are however unbelievably expensive. I mean, in my case just to cover the eight windows, we are talking about in excess of $2,500.00 dollars.
There are cheaper alternatives, but they may require some extra work to make them functional in a Motorhomes.. Mind you even using the cheaper ones, you will still look for at least $100.oo dollars per window.
For the time being, an aluminium strip, will do the trick.. 😎